electro-Physics: 17.3409 volts

From: Tom Jennings <tomj_at_wps.com>
Date: Mon Dec 13 13:13:38 2004

> Tom> I don't know, but 60Hz is awfully convenient for calculating
> Tom> time (with synch motors).

On Mon, 13 Dec 2004, Paul Koning wrote:

> So is 50 Hz. The fastest moving hand on a clock goes at one RPM, so
> any frequency that can be converted to 1/60th Hz by multiplying with a
> sequence of rational numbers p/q with moderate sized p and q is fine.

First, I don't mean to imply 'therefore 60Hz is superior',
though we can have fun making jokes about it :-)

60 is convenient (not necessarily superior) in calcing time
re: navigationally. It divides nicely into 360 (degrees in a
circle) and all the related measures thereof. Of course with
actual machinery such relations are merely pretty, especially
on hallucinogens (really).

> Some of this discussion reminds me of the "arguments" why the metric
> system is inferior to the US system of measures.

I'm on another mailing list where one person's .sig contains URLs
to rants about the evils of the metric system, and 'the govamint'
taking away mercurochrome, plus a few other tinfoil-hat subjects.

[I found the sig:
        Non-political causes I support-
        We want mercurochrome - http://www.mercurochrome.org
        Self explanatory - http://www.metricsucks.org

The former being *particulary* good.

(The English system is handy in that, it seems to be based upon
halving and doubling, and therefore is good with profoundly
low-tech implementations (eg. stick and string or chain). If this
were the 17th century you could make some argument about it,
but certainly not in the last 100. Not that I would, anyways,
unless it led to hilarity or heightened beer-consumption. Though
the French I believe played with decimal time -- we never heard
of THAT again (though I did once have a 24hr clock with 100
minutes, presumably for timecard-type purposes (this is far
too many parentheticals))).

> I don't actually know where 50 and 60 Hz came from, nor 100 and 115
> and 220 and 240 volts. There may be some ancient justification in the
> tinkerings of various 19th century engineers, but it seems to me it
> makes most sense simply to view them as random numbers.

I think that is the correct answer, if such a thing is even possible.

At least here in the sensible north hemisphere (where "up"
really means "up" and the water goes down the toilet the proper
direction. Maybe you saw the episode of The Simpsons where
the U.S. Embassy has a rather complex toilet with a mechanism
that FORCES the water to go in the proper direction. American
technology at work -- screw you guys!)
Received on Mon Dec 13 2004 - 13:13:38 GMT

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